Shopping used to bring up all my anxiety at once. Fellow empaths will understand the feeling of feeling other people’s feelings - you know? I’ve had clients laugh at this, who haven’t shopped much before, and once they go they always call me and say, “Omg, I did not expect to feel so overwhelmed”. It’s a hectic place trying to hunt and gather your food off those shelves, I feel you! Throw in trying to figure out what’s healthy and what’s not while only having 100$ is a whole extra anxiety attack. Don’t worry, I know exactly the stress this causes and I know exactly how to combat it. It was 4 years in the making and now I can finally handle the grocery store all on my own without hand holding and without wanting to run out screaming. Now I can help you do the same! Success!
Before I begin I want to share with you my free Gut Health Grocery List. It’s a minimalistic, delicious guide to healing your gut without breaking the bank. Download it here.
Okay, let’s get this sh*t poppin’ shall we?
Here are my 3 best tips for navigating a healthy grocery haul on a budget:
1. Frozen foods are your friend
*record scratch* what? I thought frozen foods were bad for you?! Not at all bud, they are your cheapest, freshest, healthiest option when on a budget. However, not all frozen foods are created equal - go figure. When purchasing your frozen items make sure to check the ingredients list [NOT THE NUTRITION FACTS]. The ingredients list will be under the nutrition label and it will literally say in bold, “Ingredients: ….” Read those. If the list is long put it back, if it says things other than the name of the food you’re trying to purchase, put it back.
Buying frozen works best for vegetables but there are some fruits that stay well frozen such as; mangos and blueberries. Frozen foods are flash frozen at their ripest time which means they’re probably more fresh than your fresh foods since they didn’t get picked and then take fourteen trucks to get to your local grocer.
Downside: The taste isn’t as crispy and delicious as it would be if you bought fresh due to the excess water in frozen foods but they’re still tasty and a great option when you’re on a budget. This can also be used just to offset costs, so you still buy fresh with a mix of frozen. Done and done.
Pre-made riced cauliflower and the premix California blend vegetables are my absolute fave and can be popped into the oven easily with your favorite protein of choice without all the prep work!
2. Organic Shmanic
I’ve come to realize people feel they absolutely need to buy organic and that if they do they’re somehow eating healthy. This couldn’t be further from the truth, organic cookies aren’t doing anything for you health boo. That’s a marketing ploy working its magic. Getting all organic fresh fruit and vegetables also isn’t necessary if you're on a budget. What?! I know.
Have you heard of the dirty dozen? It’s 12 fruits and vegetables that you’ll want to consider buying organic because they’re impacted the most by pesticides. I know once you get started you want to go full force on your health but doing what you can with what you got is going to make the biggest impact for you. Struggling to buy organic or using it as an excuse not to purchase healthier foods isn’t doing anything for your health. Just start by buying what you can!
3. Keep to the perimeter
I know this sounds like an airport employee at the security checkpoint but staying to the perimeter of the grocery store also has its benefits. The foods on the four walls of the grocery store are typically where the main health foods are; meats, vegetables, fruits. I can guarantee if you stick to the outside of the store and don’t find yourself in and out of those middle aisles you will save a couple bucks! Those middle aisles get you and they get you every time! From fancy health-snacks to chocolate aisles to cereal aisles they will bleed you dry with their devilish antics. Trust me, something will catch your eye. The more you can avoid these aisles the healthier and wealthier you will be!
This isn’t to say never go down a middle aisle again but just being cognizant of how much time you spend in there and the foods you’re finding and purchasing - I’m telling you the more you can stay away the more moola you’ll have for those fresh fruits and vegetables.
I’m going to add a fourth one down here but I think it goes without saying; go to the grocery store prepared. Knowing what you’re going to get, what you’re getting it for and getting out is the easiest way to not blow the budget or get overwhelmed. If you need help with your preparation make sure join the Gut Calm Blueprint online membership!
I share weekly & budget friendly grocery lists, meal plans and tips just like this in my Gut Calm Blueprint Membership. If you want to feel confident in healing your gut and getting healthy once and for all without breaking the bank - it's time to join the membership!
Happy Shopping x
What are your favorite grocery store 'tricks' ? Leave them in the comments below!
Hey! My names Ashleen.